At 4 PM, all of the office workers watched the tiny box-of-a-TV. “The baseball game is playing. Okinawa is in the championship,” my co-worker told me as our supervisor adjusted the antennas. The team was Konan High School, the last standing Okinawan team in the 2010 National High School Baseball Summer Tournament. They beat out 46 teams, making Coach Masaru Gakiya the most famous baseball coach in Okinawa.
I met him at a private event by the U.S. Consulate, and from all of the Americans present, I think I visibly showed my excitement to be in the same room.